Barclays Bank insists it will continue to support businesses on the Isle of Wight, even as it introduces a 'new relationship management model'.

It says its new approach will 'make it easier' for corporate customers.

Two dedicated local business banking managers will continue to be based on the Island, but their role will be to support 'more established businesses with their growth plans.'

Barclays says that for even larger clients, with more complex needs and larger lending requirements, a mainland-based regional director can travel as required.

Meanwhile, smaller businesses and start-ups will use online and telephone services.

Barclays Business Direct is also for smaller firms that trade abroad or need loans.

Barclays has two Isle of Wight branches, at Newport and Ryde, one of which Isle of Wight start-ups must visit, for identify and verification checks.

One business customer told the County Press that he feared access to a representative would be more difficult after the changes.

A Barclays spokesperson said: "Barclays continues to work hard to support our business customers across the UK, including those on the Isle of Wight, as we emerge from the Covid-19 crisis.

"Barclays continues to have a significant presence on the Isle of Wight.

"For those looking to start up in business, such as sole traders, there is a requirement to visit a branch to fulfil our regulatory identity and verification requirements, which can be completed at a branch on the Isle of Wight."